With the casino scene booming, the city’s dining landscape is changing quickly. Here, some of our favorites—old and new. By JEN LIN-LIU
Published on Apr 2, 2010Page : 1 2
+ BLUE FROG BAR & GRILL
The Shanghai-based chain run by American entrepreneur Bob Boyce extends its reach past mainland China with this swanky restaurant-cum-pub in The Venetian Macao, bringing American comforts with a fusion twist, like Sichuanmarinade rib-eye steaks and Asian chicken salads. With its wide-screen televisions suspended above the bar, an extensive cocktail list and hip Café del Mar tunes, this is one place that exemplifies Macau’s Vegas-like rise. Don’t miss the Bloody Mary kit—an assortment of ingredients for the iconic treat, which you assemble yourself— best ordered with Sunday brunch.
Shop 1037, Level 1, Grand Canal Shoppes, The Venetian Macao, Cotai, Macau, +853 2882 8281
Naysayers might call it overrated, but this longtime eatery, decorated with simple checkered tablecloths and wood-paneled walls, is still one of the best Portuguese restaurants in town. Located near the quiet Hac Sa Beach, it’s a fantastic reprieve from the growing hubbub of downtown Macau and the Cotai Strip. That Fernando Gomes and his manager Lorenzo Lopez are still fixtures here attests to the consistent quality the restaurant has been able to maintain for more than 22 years. It also feels like a home—patrons are free to stroll around the back garden and even into the kitchen, which is capacious enough to accommodate the occasional curious diner. Don’t miss the delicious suckling pig, roasted for several hours in a shallow baking pan to give the skin a crispy finish.
9 Praia de Hac Sa, +853 2888 2264/2531
+ IMPERIAL HOUSE DIM SUM
For a surreal experience, pop on over to The Venetian’s main casino floor around midnight, head up a short ramp set amid the clanging slot machines, and sit back as the waiters pour tea and serve delicious dim sum. Aside from being one of the few dim sum places in the world situated in the middle of a casino floor, it’s also open 24 hours. Decorated with Chinese lanterns and wooden tables, the place is perpetually packed with Cantonese who jet over from Hong Kong via speedboat. Don’t miss the pan-fried noodles with pork and the shrimp dumplings (har gaw).
Shop 1042, Venetian Macao-Resort-Hotel, Cotai Strip, Macau, +853 2882 8888
+ O INFANTE
If you have time for only one meal in Macau, eat it here. This seven-table restaurant down a back alley in Taipa (not far from the Cotai Strip) serves delicious home-style Portuguese dishes and reasonably priced wines. Merlinde Clemente, the Angola-raised owner of Portuguese and Macanese descent, often eats near the kitchen, watching over her chefs who prepare meals with recipes from her childhood. Don’t miss the arroz de mariscos—a dish similar to paella—crab, shrimp, clams and mussels slow-cooked in a clay pot with rice.
Rua das Virtudes near Taipan Mercado, +853 2882 7421
+ LORD STOW’S BAKERY
Housed in a tiny, two-story residence with a red-tiled roof, this café in one of the most charming parts of Macau—the sleepy beachside community of Coloane—is also the place that popularized the Portuguese egg tart in the 1990’s. Locals hang out reading the newspaper on barstools, while tourists cluster around the bakery counter. Founded by Englishman Andrew Stow in 1989, the bakery now has a number of chain stores around Asia. Don’t miss the Portuguese egg tarts, torched to give them a crème brulée–like finish.
1 Rua da Tassara, Coloane Town Sq., +853 2888 2174
+ RESTAURANTE LITORAL
Traditionally, male chefs and patrons dominated restaurants in Macau, says Restaurante Litoral’s female owner Manuela Ferreira. That changed with the opening of her establishment more than 13 years ago and other women restaurateurs in Macau have since followed suit. Decorated in the style of a Macanese home with a fireplace, stone floors and antique lamps, this restaurant buzzes with activity in the evenings—reservations are a must. Don’t miss the grilled codfish with potatoes and garlic, a tender and flavorful treat.
261-A Rua do Almirante Sergio, +853 2896 7878
+ RIQUEXO CAFE
It’s not easy to find authentic Macanese cuisine in Macau, especially when it’s hidden in a canteen among a bland row of commercial shops in central Macau. This unpretentious restaurant, with its standard cafeteria counter and trays, serves the real deal, made by a 92-year-old woman who has run the place for more than 40 years. Open just for lunch, it’s the perfect stopping point after a walk around old Macau. Don’t miss the Bacalhau Natas, a salted-codfish souffle, and minchi, a combination of minced pork, potatoes, soy sauce, onions and egg.
69 Avenida Sidonio Pais, +853 2856 5655